There are many interesting jobs out there but not all of them pay well. Some people enjoy working with consumers but quickly realize that a line-level job in hospitality, retail, or food service does not offer a large paycheck. Market researchers focus on consumers every day by gathering information about what the public thinks. A market research analyst salary is very attractive and is expected to only get better.
Companies either employ or contract market research analysts to help them understand consumer thoughts and behaviors. These workers design customer surveys, gather statistical information regarding the competition, and use data from past sales to estimate future income. The information obtained by market research analysts is used to enhance products and services.
A bachelor’s degree, good quantitative and communication skills, persistence, patience, and familiarity with Web-based survey tools are required to excel in this career. Market research analysts work in various industries, with consulting firms, computer companies, insurance carriers, and market research firms employing the most people in this field. In the coming years, market research and consulting firms will provide the most opportunities as more companies outsource this role.
As of May 2010, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics listed a mean annual wage of $66,850 for market research analysts. The lowest ten percent of earners averaged $33,350 annually, while the middle 50 percent had an average annual wage of $60,570. The top earners in this field made an average of $111,440 annually. Annual mean wage in Oregon was $82,920, making it the highest paying state at the time.
It should be easiest for market research analysts to find work in California, New York, Texas, Pennsylvania, and Illinois because these states have the highest level of employment in the field. California also has the honor of being one of the top paying states, offering an annual mean wage of $74,300. Based on the work involved, it makes sense that many market research analysts work in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington D.C., Boston, and Philadelphia metro areas.
Were it not for the work of market research analysts, our standard of living would be lower. The market research analyst salary is reflective of the important role this individual plays in product and service development. As employment in this field grows much faster than the average for most other U.S. occupations, the most skilled individuals will be able to command the highest salaries.